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S. M. Paine (Bristol, UK)

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8891 Meter USB Printer Cable Unpacked
8891 Meter USB Printer Cable Unpacked

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A triumph of the Walkman range, 30 Dec. 2008
I received this phone today as a replacement for my trusty W880i which I've been using since April 07. I don't normally keep phones that long but Sony Ericsson hadn't released anything to tempt me to part with the W880i. They have now, in the shape of the W902.

The music player on the W902 is absolutely brilliant, and completely trumps many dedicated music players on the market. The sound quality is absolutely top drawer, better than the previous Walkman phones (which set a very high standard themselves) and the headphones are also upgraded from the previous Walkman phones. The phone includes a motion sensor and features AutoRotate so you can use the music player in landscape as opposed to portrait just by turning it in that direction. Oh, and I nearly forgot, the W902 comes with an 8GB memory card included - I have 800 songs on mine, encoded at a high bitrate, and I haven't even filled half of it. It's the first Walkman phone (I think) to incorporate music player buttons on the side of the phone (play/pause, rewind and fastforward). This is very useful if you have the phone in your pocket - a single press of a button and you can skip tracks quite easily. The phone also includes Shake Control, but I find this a completely useless feature!

The W902 is the first Walkman phone with a 5 megapixel camera, and it also has LED flash and autofocus. Many previous Walkman phones were let down by the camera but there is no danger of that here.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but I would rate the W902 as a very aesthetically pleasing phone. It has a classic candybar design, and is very reminiscent of the W810i. It's completely jet black with the odd flash of silver and orange. The battery cover is a kind of metal mesh material, as is the right hand side of the front of the phone (making the phone assymetrical appearance-wise). It's not as slim as the W880i, but there needs to be some sacrifices if a 5 megapixel camera is to be included. It certainly doesn't feel like a brick, anyway. The build quality is excellent. It's also fairly light, and it's feather-like in comparison to the rival Nokia N85.

The W902 comes equipped with a pedometer which I suppose is a pretty useful feature. It has a good selection of games including Need for Speed (which has occupied most of my day!) It also incorporates Google Maps and YouTube. It has an FM Radio with RDS which is pretty much standard across the Walkman range nowadays.

Sony Ericsson have really upped the ante with this one. It's a massive improvement on anything that's come before in the Walkman range, with an 8GB MP3 player and a 5 megapixel camera standing side-by-side. I generally find Sony Ericsson better than the rest when it comes to making stylish, good looking phones and this one is no different. Its looks are edgy enough to satisfy the youth market and classy enough to satisfy those who would maybe have been deterred by the garish orange/black combos of the past.

Rating: 9.5/10 - slight marks deducted for the lack of WiFi and the fact that the camera is slightly outperformed by the Nokia N85.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 15, 2009 8:45 PM GMT

Learning Legal Rules: A Student's Guide to Legal Method and Reasoning (6th Edition)
Learning Legal Rules: A Student's Guide to Legal Method and Reasoning (6th Edition)
by James A. Holland LLB PhD
Edition: Paperback

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading for anyone embarking on a Law degree, 4 April 2008
I bought this book 3 years ago before starting my LLB, and bought it again last week as I hope to study for an LLM next year and wanted to brush up on my legal skills.

The book is very good at getting a prospective law student to think like a lawyer. It sets out very well the areas that a student needs to know about, such as judicial precedent, statutory interpretation and the now unavoidable influence of the European Union and the European Convention on Human Rights on English law.

Two minor criticisms. Firstly, I think the authors do not clarify or explain certain topics enough, especially as this is aimed at students who have not yet studied Law. Secondly, there are countless typing and printing errors in the 6th edition. This can be very distracting and means that perhaps the book does not convey the professionalism you would expect from a legal text.

Sony Ericsson W910i Sim Free Mobile Phone - Black
Sony Ericsson W910i Sim Free Mobile Phone - Black

27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Style and gimmicks over substance, 4 Nov. 2007
I bought the W910i a week ago to replace my W880i. I used it for a day and have decided to sell it and stick with my W880i. Here's why.

The phone boasts a fair amount of new features. Unfortunately most of them turn out to be gimmicks. The "shake control" feature is the worst. To get it to work, you need to hold the walkman key and flick your wrist to the right. This is quite a lot of effort, as it requires a pretty firm flick. I showed my brother the feature and he laughed out loud at its ridiculousness. It is a lot easier just to press the right navigation key, and so I consider the shake control feature to be counterproductive and pointless.

The second new feature is the motion sensor ("auto-rotate"). What you're not told is that auto-rotate only works in the walkman player. Also, it's a bit temperamental. In its defence, the motion sensor does add a different dimension to gaming as you can control the game by rotating the phone.

I found texting to be very difficult on the W910i, and I have small fingers. The buttons are right next to each other, with no gaps, resulting in the wrong key being pressed quite often. The phone comes with a FM radio, with Stereo and RDS, which the W880i does not have. However, SE don't appear to have moved very fair on their radios since the K750i - move ten feet and your previously crystal clear sound is now fuzzy.

The W910i comes with a standard 2 megapixel camera which takes very good pictures in the day and very bad pictures at night due to the lack of flash. Once again, SE have not moved forward in this area - the camera is the same if not worse than the one on the 3-year-old K750i.

Points in favour of the W910i:
The main good point about the W910i is the design. It is relatively slim (12.5mm) and light (86g), has a huge, crystal clear screen, and has something a bit edgy about it which separates it from the usual Samsung/Nokia designs, and would surely appeal to the youth market a lot more.

Secondly, the W910i comes with Sony Ericsson Media Manager v1.0, which is infinitely better than the terrible software that comes with previous walkman phones. You can convert the format and bit rate of tracks upon transfer. Also, you can use the SenseMe technology to put your tracks on a kind of graph so you can select tracks by mood.

The in-ear headphones supplied with the phone produce amazing sound quality and superb bass response (courtesy of the MegaBass feature). A 1GB memory card is included, which will store over 500 tracks. The GUI of the walkman player has been changed for the W910i and it looks much nicer and slicker than on the previous walkman phones. However, the price you pay is that the menus are very slow, and you often have to wait for the phone to catch up when scrolling through tracks.

On the whole, the W910i is a disappointing addition to the set of walkman phones. It doesn't really improve on its predacessor, the W880i, and yet comes with a very hefty price tag. If you like your phones stylish, they don't come much better than this. If you actually want some substance beneath the style, it may be best to steer clear.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 26, 2008 11:29 PM BST

Turn On The Bright Lights
Turn On The Bright Lights
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: £6.48

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A genuine modern classic, 5 Sept. 2007
"Turn on the Bright Lights" is, in my opinion, one of the best albums of the decade, completely justifying the hype that surrounded its release, and remains one of my favourite albums five years after its release.

The highlights include "Obstacle 1" (rightfully voted one of the best guitar tracks ever by Q Magazine), the wonderfully melancholy "NYC" and the beautiful album closer "Leif Erikson". That said, no track here is dispensible - all contribute to making this the brilliant album that it is. "Obstacle 2" is a real grower - I didn't like it at first, but can't get enough of it now. The bass is so rude that it should have an ASBO slapped on it. "Say Hello to the Angels" showcases the band's ability to make a song without a clear structure and yet which completely works.

I love it when bands just let their instruments play and not always worry about flooding each song with vocals. An example is the glorious section towards the end of "PDA" (from 3:11 onwards) where the music builds from guitar to bass to drums to, eventually, vocals. It really is a delight to listen to. There are also such examples in "Hands Away" and "The New". When your instruments sound this good, you don't always need wall-to-wall vocals.

The album's main strength, and what sets it apart from it's (admittedly excellent) successor "Antics" is that you never get tired of it, such is the brilliant construction of the album. Also, it is more of an "album" in the traditional sense, whereas "Antics" is arguably a collection of singles. It doesn't flow as well as "Turn On The Bright Lights".

Because Of The Times
Because Of The Times
Offered by TwoRedSevens
Price: £3.69

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "She's such a charmer, oh no", 14 Jun. 2007
This review is from: Because Of The Times (Audio CD)
Because of the Times is a little different to Kings of Leon's previous two releases - it has less of an immediate impact and takes longer to sink in. However after a few listens, I came to realise that this is the best out of their three albums to date.

One of the album's strengths is its variety and its ability to transcend genres whilst keeping the traditional KOL sound - grunge in "Charmer", pop-rock in "On Call", arena-rock in "Black Thumbnail", funk (or dance punk) in "My Party", reggae in "Ragoo" and gospel in "The Runner".

My favourite track on the album is "My Party" - the sheer amount of layers and the way it strips bare in the middle, then builds from drums to bass to guitar to vocals is a joy to listen to. I defy anyone to keep still when listening to this track. Other standout tracks are "McFearless", "Arizona" and "Black Thumbnail".

To conclude, the album takes longer to get into, but it's much more rewarding when you do, and as a result, it takes longer to get tired of the album than the other two. Also, you get much more album for your money - 51 minutes compared to 38 on Aha Shake Heartbreak.

Sony Ericsson K800i On Vodafone Pay As You Go
Sony Ericsson K800i On Vodafone Pay As You Go

36 of 41 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good phone, but not without its downsides, 27 May 2007
The main selling point of this phone is the 3.2 megapixel camera, which takes very good photos indeed, daytime or night. It has anti-shake technology which means that photos do not come out blurred, and there was very little graininess to be seen, even on my 19" monitor. Therefore, if the camera is important to you, you will not be disappointed.

However, the camera really does protrude out of the back, and the lens cover often gets opened accidentally in your pocket. You might like to consider as an alternative the new k810i, which has just been released. The camera is much more subtly implemented on that phone, and the phone itself is considerably thinner than the k800i.

That brings me on to another problem with the k800i - its size. It is long, thick and heavy, weighing in at 115 grams. If you put it in your pocket, you know it's there and it gradually becomes very annoying. Also, it's really not very nice to look at - if design is important to you, it's probably best to avoid this phone.

The phone comes with a music player built in, and also has an FM radio (which the latest walkman phone does not have). However, there is no memory card included so you will have to splash out £40 on a micro-SD memory card if you want to have a decent amount of music on the phone.

Overall I'd give it 7 / 10 - it's a very high spec phone with a very impressive camera, but it's let down by its size and weight. If you can afford it, go for the k810i instead.

Raise The Alarm
Raise The Alarm
Offered by Direct Entertainment UK
Price: £8.25

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Criminally underrated, 21 May 2007
This review is from: Raise The Alarm (Audio CD)
The Sunshine Underground have produced an indie album with just a hint of "new rave" (whatever that actually means) which is consistently brilliant from start to finish. There are no weak tracks on the album whatsoever. If you like listening to your music whilst walking somewhere (as I do), this album is great as it puts a spring in your step. It's really hard to pick any standout tracks as it's all brilliant, but Dead Scene, Commercial Breakdown, Borders and I Ain't Losing Any Sleep are my favourites.

Everyone's banging on about Klaxons and no-one seems to know who The Sunshine Underground are. Something's gone wrong somewhere.

Sony Ericsson W880i Sim Free Mobile Phone
Sony Ericsson W880i Sim Free Mobile Phone

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Stylish yet functional, 25 April 2007
The main selling point of the W880i is its super-slim design - it is under a centimetre thick and weighs just 71 grams. My previous phone, the K800i, was twice the thickness and weighed 115 grams. You can put the W880i in your pocket and forget it's there, which is great. Also, it is absolutely stunning to look at, and in my opinion is the best looking phone on the market by a mile. If style is important to you, there's none better.

It comes with Walkman 2.0, which is a lot easier to navigate, and with MegaBass included it produces an amazing sound quality. It comes with ear-canal headphones, which go right inside your ear and produce an excellent sound with superb bass response. N.B. - make sure you get the headphones all the way in, or it will sound tinny. Crucially, it also comes included with a 1GB memory stick, which saves you a cool £40.

Some people have criticised the buttons for being too small. I heard them described as "smaller than a grain of rice", which is pretty true, but not necessarily a bad thing. I found that, because the buttons are spaced quite far apart, texting is easy (but do bear in mind I have small fingers).

It has a 2.0 megapixel camera which unfortunately lacks flash and autofocus. The quality of the pictures in day time I found to be very good, but the quality of night time pictures (no doubt due to the lack of flash) I must admit are poor. Then again, if you want to take high quality pictures, get a camera!

Overall, I'm very pleased with the phone and will be keeping it for some time. The walkman is the best on a Sony Ericsson phone so far, the camera's not great but does a decent job, and the thin, lightweight design makes it a real winner.

8.5 / 10

Room On Fire
Room On Fire
Offered by DVD Overstocks
Price: £5.45

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 33 minutes of outstanding garage rock, 16 Mar. 2007
This review is from: Room On Fire (Audio CD)
In 2003 The Strokes faced a very difficult challenge - making an album anywhere near as good as Is This It (for me, one of the best albums ever). It's not as good as Is This is - not much is - but it comes pretty close.

It starts with a perfect album opener 'Whatever Happened', followed by the outstanding 'Reptilia'. Albert Hammond Jr's 'Automatic Stop' is a delightful, slower-tempo album track and forms a perfect interlude between 'Reptilia' and lead-single '12:51'. '12:51' is 2 and a half minutes of pop-rock perfection, such a simple and yet effective track with a great guitar riff.

'You Talk Way Too Much' is the closest this album gets to filler or throwaway, but this is based on The Strokes' high standards, and it is a very good song in its own right. 'Between Love and Hate' is another slower song, reminiscent of 'Automatic Stop'. 'Meet Me In The Bathroom' is another catchy 3-minute garage-rock romp, whilst 'Under Control' is a slightly strange song structually, but is definitely a grower.

The latter half of the album is punctuated by 'The End Has No End', an absolutely superb track, which would have fitted nicely onto Is This It. The album ends strongly with the edgy 'The Way It Is' and the pleasant 'I Can't Win'. I would rate the album at 4.5/5, but as there are no half stars I'll have to round it up! Yes, ok, it might be 'Is This It Mark 2' but why change a winning formula?

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